New Labels Could Help Shoppers Avoid Unhealthy Foods
The UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism’s News21 program and Good Magazine recently announced the winners of the Rethink the Food Label competition. Entrants, who ranged from public citizens, food thinkers and nutritionists, to students and graphic designers, were challenged to redesign the Nutrition Facts Label to make it easier to read and more useful to people who want to consume healthier, more nutritious and wholesome food.
Between GMOs, trans fats, palm oil and high fructose corn syrup, there are a lot of nasty ingredients for conscious consumers should avoid when shopping for groceries.
Unfortunately, few families have time to meander slowly down the aisles, deciphering labels and comparing one product’s barely-recognizable ingredient list to another. What shoppers need is a clear, transparent labeling system that lets them know exactly what they’ll be putting into their bodies if they buy a certain product.
Ultimately, the contest’s organizers hoped that the creativity and passion demonstrated by the winning entries would inspire the FDA, which is in the process of revising the national nutrition label.
The judges, which included author and activist Michael Pollan and anti-sugar crusader Robert Lustig, finally awarded first price to Renee Walker, a visual designer who came up with a simple but elegant style that quietly urges shoppers toward the smartest food options. Walker also won the people’s choice award.
Walkers labels are “dominated by a color-coded box that shows the breakdown of ingredients, including unappetizing shades of gray for additives and preservatives. So in one glance you can tell, say, which of these peanut butters has added filler and which one is mostly ground-up nuts,” writes Grist.org.
“[I]t’s a step in the right direction,” Pollan says of Walker’s design. “What I’d like to see next is some sort of color coding for the food groups and some attempt to show the degree of processing of various foods. Eating doesn’t have to be complicated; figuring out what’s in your food shouldn’t be either.”
Click on the thumbnails below to see other designs from the competition. Which is your favorite?
via Fast Company
Images via berkeley.news21.com